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Expedition leader, Conan Bliss, and the team have returned to Ama Dablam base camp and Conan provides the happy news:

Ama Dablam Expedition Summary: At 7:40 am on November 4th, the Madison Mountaineering team stood alone on the summit of Ama Dablam. The sky was cloudless, offering amazing 360-degree views including Everest, Lhotse, and Makalu. This was the culmination of weeks of effort, patience, and perseverance and we were fortunate with an excellent weather window. The team is back at base camp today resting and will trek out tomorrow and the following day. We would like to say special thanks to our amazing Nepali crew, both climbing Sherpas as well as our outstanding base camp crew. Thanks for following us on this epic adventure; we hope to see you in the mountains soon!

(photo:  Madison Mountaineering archives)

Ama Dablan

Conan Bliss, expedition leader, checked-in today with an update on the Ama Dablam expedition:

The Ama Dablam team arrived back at BC after a successful acclimatization rotation. We stayed 2 nights at C1 and made a climb up to C2, ascending the famous Yellow Tower yesterday. Tomorrow we’ll have a rest day then plan our summit push on the 2nd, weather permitting.

Training around Ama Dablam base camp

Expedition leader, Conan Bliss, checks in with today’s update:

The Ama Dablam team is enjoying another training session this morning at BC. We’ll relax this afternoon and get packed for our two-night acclimatization rotation starting tomorrow (29th/30th). We’ll stay both nights at C1 and plan to climb to touch C2 on the 30th. We’ll check back in on the 31st when we are back in BC.

Ama Dablam base camp

Expedition leader, Conan Bliss, checks in with today’s update on the Ama Dablam expedition:

The Ama Dablam team arrived at BC yesterday (October 25 – local). It was a snowy evening but clouds are breaking today. We had a fun and productive morning doing rope training. Tomorrow we’re planning an acclimatization hike to Yak Camp and will spend the next 2 nights in BC. Weather permitting we aim to climb to C1 on the 28th or 29th for two nights. Thanks for checking in.

Ama Dablam base camp

Ama Dablam base camp

Ama Dablam

Our autumn Ama Dablam expedition kicked off earlier this week and the team has been trekking their way up to base camp from the mountain airport village of Lukla (2860m / 9,380ft.).  The first stop was the village of Monjo where they entered the Sagarmatha National Park. and from there up to Namche Bazaar where a couple of days were spent resting.  On their acclimatization hikes above Namche, the team caught the first glimpses of their objective:  Ama Dablam.  Great hiking weather with dramatic clouds unveiling the summit.  From Namche, the team pressed on to Deboche and were able to spend some time enjoying the Tengboche Monastery on their way.

Today they are now at the last village before Ama Dablam base camp, Pangboche and should be crossing the river and finishing up the trek to BC tomorrow.

Team arrives Lukla

Brook and Rick at the hanging bridges below Namche

Brook and Rick at the hanging bridges below Namche

Having a great trek and now are on the Namche cappuchino tour

Ama Dablam team - Brook, Conan, Rick

Ama Dablam team – Brook, Conan, Rick

Ama Dablam

First glimpse of the Ama Dablam

Ama Dablam team checking out the Tengboche Monastery en route to Pangboche


Also follow the team on Instagram:  @MadisonMtng

Kristin on Ama Dablam

First Ama Dablam summit of the season! Big Congratulations to Kristin Bennett, Aang Phurba Sherpa and the rest of our Sherpa team on Ama Dablam!  They pushed through tough snow conditions and fixed ropes to get to the top on October 10th around 6:00PM local time! 20 hour summit day. Way to go team!!

Kristin on Ama Dablam

Trekking day 1:  Lukla to Phakding – Distance: 8.30 km – Elev Gain/Loss: 394m/-639m

Expedition leader, Garrett Madison, provides the recap of today’s exciting flight to the trailhead mountain village of Lukla and the first day of trekking towards Everest Base Camp:

Hello!  This is Garrett calling in for the Mountain Hardwear Everest expedition and base camp trek.  Today is September 8th.  We were very lucky this morning to have an early flight at 6:00 AM out of Kathmandu and landed in Lukla.  But not after a fun, unplanned stop in the small village of Phaplu on the way.  The clouds rolled in and the Lukla airport was closed en route on our flight so the pilot diverted and landed at a small airstrip on the way.  Then when the clouds parted our pilot took off and landed us in Lukla.

 

From Lukla we made our way up the start of the Khumbu Valley.  It’s amazingly green here right now!  It’s been raining so much at the end of the monsoon season.  Everything is just incredibly green and vibrant.  A lot of growth here – the vegetation, the trees, the forest…  So, we’ve got it really good here!  We are at Phakding in the Sunrise lodge.  We just finished a good dinner and are heading off to bed.

 

Tomorrow we are going to head up to Namche.  Everybody’s feeling great.  It’s surprisingly quite here in the Khumbu.  We have the lodge all to ourselves and we didn’t see many people on the trail today because it’s not quite the trekking season which starts up in October.  We are feeling great and looking forward to a great day trekking up to Namche tomorrow.

(photo:  Lukla airport from the Madison Mountaineering Everest archives)


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow the team as they trek to Everest Base Camp and then make their attempt to summit the world’s highest mountain on:

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates
Trekking team at the Yak and Yeti

All of us at Madison Mountaineering are very excited that after many months of planning, the Mountain Hardwear Everest Expedition kicks-off today!  Expedition leader, Garrett Madison, is now in Kathmandu with the entire trekking team and just provided this update to start off this exciting and rare Autumn season attempt on Mount Everest:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Mountain Hardwear Autumn 2019 Everest Expedition!  The team is in Kathmandu (the trekking team) and we went out for a wonderful team dinner yesterday evening.  Folks are getting ready to head out on a city tour of Kathmandu today and we are planning on flying to Lukla tomorrow morning, weather pending.  It’s been a very wet monsoon here the last few months in Nepal.  We are hoping for some dry weather coming up shortly here to start our trek into base camp.  So, we are very excited to be here and to be launching the expedition and heading up into the Khumbu Valley and making our way towards Everest Base Camp!

 

In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow the team as they trek to Everest Base Camp and then make their attempt to summit the world’s highest mountain:

– on Instagram:

– on our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

– on Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates
Climbers nearing the summit on May 23rd

Congratulations to our Everest 2019 spring team in successfully climbing the world’s highest peak, but more importantly making it down safely! In contrast to what the media has portrayed, our experience on summit day was a pleasant one, due to a strong and experienced team. Our guides and Sherpas not only installed the fixed lines to the summit, which ‘opened’ the route on May 14th for all climbers on the south side of the mountain but also supported our climbers in a seamless climb of Mount Everest. The challenge of climbing Everest, coupled with the added uncertainty of the weather and other climbers on the route, can create adverse conditions. However, our team of professionals orchestrated a perfect expedition under the circumstances.

 

Climbers celebrating at the summit

Climbers celebrating at the summit

The Everest summit ridge on May 23rd

The Everest summit ridge on May 23rd

In my 12 expeditions to Everest, this was one of the finest teams of hard working, competent, positive, and pleasant Nepal “Sherpas”, many of who I have climbed with for the last 5 years. Big thanks for these incredible guys who helped us make our extraordinary success possible!

Madison Mountaineering rope fixing team on Everest summit day

MM rope team on summit day

Now our attention turns to the world’s second highest peak, K2. Today, our advance team of 100 porters and 2 Pakistan high altitude climbers left the village of Askole to begin the 100 km trek to K2 base camp.

K2 supplies headed to base camp

K2 supplies headed to base camp

Over 100 porters and staff leaving Askoli for K2

Over 100 porters and staff leaving Askoli for K2

We are excited to meet our climbing team in Islamabad in mid-June and make our way to ‘Chogori’, the savage mountain.

Our autumn Himalayan season following K2 will be action-packed, with our first ever Expedition to Everest in the fall!  We also have expeditions attempting Ama Dablam, as well as an unclimbed peak! Previously, we have had very high success on these peaks in the autumn. For climbers looking to climb the highest peak in Oceania, we also have a Carstensz Pyramid climb. We invite you to join us if climbing in the Himalaya or Oceania is on your ‘to do’ list this autumn!

Our Mount Vinson expeditions also have some availability, if climbing in Antarctica is on your mind, contact us for details!

A toast to a safe climb at our base camp with the Khumbu Icefall behind

With the Everest season quickly wrapping up, here’s expedition leader, Garrett Madison, with a final dispatch from the 2019 Mount Everest base camp:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Everest team.  Today most of our crew helicoptered down to Kathmandu and they are at the Yak & Yeti hotel, relaxing and enjoying a nice comfortable stay and a great dinner.  Myself, Conan and Stuart along with Joyce are still here in base camp with our Sherpa team – just packing up the camp and we are hoping to head out tomorrow down to Kathmandu.

 

But, it’s been a great season for us.  We have a very high success and safely all around with our team.  It was a challenging season, very windy on the mountain and cold this year with a narrow summit window.  And unfortunetly, there was a notable loss of life with climbers the last week on the mountain.  But we are happy to be down safe and looking forward to heading home soon.  All’s well here at base camp.  Thanks for following along!

Descending down from C2 with the Sun about to rise over Everest

Descending down from C2 with the Sun about to rise over Everest

Walking down the Western Cwm between C2 and C1

Walking down the Western Cwm between C2 and C1

Climbers descending the icefall

Climbers descending the icefall

A toast to a safe climb at our base camp with the Khumbu Icefall behind

A toast to a safe climb at our base camp with the Khumbu Icefall behind